Health and Wellness

The Best Antibacterial and Antimicrobial Essential Oils

Words by Louise Miller

Photography by Rebecca Benoit

Many plants have natural antibacterial and antimicrobial properties that are concentrated into their essential oils. These oils—which smell amazing—can be used for a myriad of cleaning and cleansing purposes. Here are a few of our favourites.

Peppermint Essential Oil

It’s herbal, it’s potent, it’s oh-so minty. This antimicrobial oil has been loved by humans for centuries, and it’s no wonder why; the combination of its refreshing scent and cooling sensation makes it a forever favourite.

Use it: Peppermint Mouthwash

Tea Tree Essential Oil

Known for its ability to treat acne, this astringent and antibacterial oil is also great for cleaning surfaces and accessories. Watch how it makes things sparkle and shine.

Use it: Jewellery cleaner

Cedarwood Essential Oil

It’s anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial, making this woodsy oil a must have. Plus, its scent is comforting like a cedar sauna, bringing vibes of the forest and the spa to wherever you are.

Use it: Cold and flu aroma

Lavender Essential Oil

An antibacterial heavyweight, this floral oil is an easy choice for natural cleaning wherever you are—that’s why it’s so often found in soaps, shampoos, and sprays. It also smells soothing and calming, which is always a good thing.

Use it: Phone cleaner

Eucalyptus Essential Oil

There’s a reason spa steam rooms use Eucalyptus—its invigorating herbal qualities open up our air pathways, and its antimicrobial properties help cleanse high-traffic spaces. This herbal oil is an instant refresh.

Use it: Steam shower

Lemongrass Essential Oil

Because it’s antibacterial and antifungal, this oil is another one that is often used in spas. With an almost candy-like aroma, Lemongrass is a great addition to soaks and other at-home pampering treatments.

Use it: Foot bath

Lemon Essential Oil

With antibacterial and antioxidant properties, this citrus oil is as useful as it is energizing. Just watch how it wakes up your senses while cleaning your home and promoting a happy-go-lucky disposition.

Use it: Shower spray

We’ll always believe in the power of plants.